Athlon & Lindys 2012 preview mags have Michigan going to B1G title game

Submitted by Wolverine Devotee on July 8th, 2012 at 5:30 PM

Was at a book store today and wanted to get the Phil Steele preview. I really disagree with him a lot, but I love the magazine mainly for the schedules and how you can fill them in along with a bunch of facts.

While I was there, I picked up the Athlon preview magazine and they had Michigan winning the division going 7-1, and having a final record of 11-2. They had ohio at the top of their division which made me laugh, because they are banned from the title game. So the title game would be Michigan vs wisconsin.

In the Lindys magazine, they had Michigan winning the division as well. Their outlook on Michigan in the B1G standings said something like: "Forget the bad news, We're in love the Wolverines this year!"

Phil's magazine has Michigan finishing second in the division behind nebraska and going to the Capital One Bowl to face georgia. The bigger joke is that he has state going to the Sugar Bowl to play LSU, despite them finishing behind Michigan. Really phil? You think they would take state over Michigan? He has Michigan rated #22 in his preseason rankings and has ohio, a team who is installing a new system #11. Also another ridiculous prediction of his was the national championship game being Oklahoma vs Florida State.

Either phil has something against Michigan, or he has his head up his ass so far he can taste his breakfast. Because last year he had Michigan going 6-6 and playing in the pizza bowl. Nice pick, phil.....what a fail.


Steve T

July 8th, 2012 at 5:46 PM ^

I think Steele had Michigan, Nebraska and Michigan State tied for the Big Ten divisional lead but he has MSU and Nebraska doing better in their non conference games. That is why he has MSU going to a BCS game.


July 8th, 2012 at 5:50 PM ^

I wouldn't worry too much about the Seminoles playing in the championship game. Florida State has overtaken Notre Dame in the annual "most consistently overrated" sweepstakes IMO.

2011: Preseason ranking #6 - Final ranking #25

2010: Preseason ranking #17 - Final ranking #23

2009: Preseason ranking #18 - Final ranking unranked

2008:Preseason ranking #25 - Final ranking unranked

2007: Preseason ranking #23 - Final ranking unranked

2006: Preseason ranking #9 - Final ranking unranked

2005: Preseason ranking #8 - Final ranking #23

2004: Preseason ranking #4 - Final ranking #16

Seemingly every year the so-called "experts" have looked at FSU and vastly overprojected the team's actual performance.  I see no reason why this year will be any different.


July 8th, 2012 at 6:39 PM ^

2004: 4
2005: 3
2006: 12
2007: 33 (?!?)
2008: 8
2009: 18
2010: 9
2011: 1
2012: 11

For a whopping record of 76-41 (NCAA-wise it's 64-41) .649, three division championships, two ACC titles and no BCS wins. They're pulling in these classes in the freaking ACC and not rolling everyone they play?

Just goes to show what discipline problems and apparently poor coaching get you.


July 8th, 2012 at 7:05 PM ^

I've always felt good coaching was the deciding factor in CFB, not recruiting rankings.

Not saying excellent recruiting isn't important---but that the recruiting websites are  inaccurate compared to each schools recruiting evaluations and are more for fans.

Rivals, scout, etc are at best a rough indicator. If you're in the top 25-30, you're fine----if coaching is topnotch.



July 8th, 2012 at 7:55 PM ^

Discounting 2012 because the season has not been played, the FSU Seminoles have averaged the 11th best class and managed an average record of 8-5 overall over that period (postseaon included).

What is interesting to me is that, if you take the team with the 11th ranked recruiting class from 2004-2011, the average record of those teams year-over-year is also 8-5.

The correlation coefficient of FSU's recruiting class rank to their win total is -0.69, so to a certain extent, the better the class(i.e., the "lower" that number is), the better they have done, but yeah, coaching (also existing talent, schedule, etc...) has a lot of say in the rest of this, I believe (the switch to Fisher from Bowden weighs some on this, I am sure). It would be interesting to do this with other teams. 



July 8th, 2012 at 8:35 PM ^

That an eleventh ranked class correlates with an 8-5 season. My guess would have been much higher. Does that hold up with that level of recruiting each year (does a school consistently recruiting just outside the top ten average eight wins, or is that a class by class type number)?

Just to throw it out there, the median is nine. Whether it's a good thing to diminish the importance of their terrible class is above my MGoPaygrade, but it seems worth mentioning at least.

angry byrne

July 8th, 2012 at 5:51 PM ^

I could be completely wrong, but I believe Phil Steele had predicted Michigan to be very good (better than the actual final records by at least a few wins) in the second and third RR years... Maybe since he was burnt on those predictions, he's going the other way now.


July 8th, 2012 at 6:17 PM ^

Michigan has a chance to do what they did last year and maybe even more considering the talent they have returning and coming in. I think this could really be the year for Craig Roh. if RR wouldn't have moved him around so much he would be a beast right now. If we can get Campbell to play at the level he's capable of playing at and get Pipkins going, then Campbell, Pipkins and Roh could suprise a lot of people this year


July 8th, 2012 at 6:26 PM ^

It is possible for Michigan to be "better" than a team, but be behind them in the rankings or get passed over for a bowl game.  Michigan has a really tough schedule and could wind up with more losses than teams we beat in conference that we have to compete for in rankings and bowl games.  Ohio State has an easy out of conference schedule nothing like ours.  It is possible that a legitimate top 5 team could lose 2 or 3 games with our schedule...

Alabama in Dallas
@Notre Dame
@ Ohio State
Michigan State


July 8th, 2012 at 8:44 PM ^

If Michigan is truly a legitimate top five team, the only team they might lose to is Alabama.  ND has too many disctactions, Nebraska is very good but not great, Ohio should struggle adjusting to Urban Meyer the first year, and Sparty is not going to be nearly as good as a lot of people think they are.  

If Michigan loses to two of those teams, they are not a legitimate top five team.  Top ten, yes: top five, no.  

Also, when Mattison coached at ND, he taught ND how to defend against the Michigan system, because he had experience with it.  We all remember what a PITA ND was when Mattison was there.  Mattison also has experience with Meyer's system, and might be able to neutralize it better than people think.  

I think Meyer could turn out to still be the great coach he was for a few years at Florida, but I am not ready to concede that he is going to have his way with Greg Mattison's defense just yet.

If Michigan has enough to be a legitimate top five team, they will go 5-0 or 4-1 against the teams mentioned.


July 8th, 2012 at 6:31 PM ^

I picked up his magazine a week ago. He has picked FSU to win the ACC three years in a row now. I guess hes bound to get it right eventually


July 8th, 2012 at 6:38 PM ^

They pick Oklahoma every year, and did so last year. The big twelve blows and always will. I hope the big ten picks it up and starts tearing up teams. I feel for the first time in a long time that we have the coaches that can do it. Go big ten, except Ohio.


July 8th, 2012 at 7:07 PM ^

Still the love affair with Florida State despite the fact that Saint Bobby Bowden is retired and FSU hasn't beaten a top ten team in 12 years.   They're not going to the national title game.

Nebraska must have the majority of guys returning but their lack of throwing game with Martinez is going to make it tough to win the division. 



July 8th, 2012 at 7:08 PM ^

I'm not so sure predicting FSU to flame out is that safe a bet.  They may, but there is, I think, at least a decent shot they'll do really well this year.  One, they're getting good talent (they had very good 2010, 2011 and 2012 recruiting classes, and a decent 2013 shaping up); and two, last year's Florida-Florida State game showed some really athletic defensive play.  Jimbo Fisher, who's not an idiot, will one day make all that talent come together.  This year may be the year.

Florida is a talent-rich state and FSU is getting their share (and maybe more) of that talent.

Plus, a Florida buddy of mine has started to express some real concerns about FSU.

Oklahoma?  That I'm not so sure of.  Stoops has to prove he's able to chew and swallow without choking.

Michigan going to the B1G championship game?  Completely plausible, particularly if some key things we've discussed before (D-Line play after graduation attrition; DR's decision making) comes through.


July 8th, 2012 at 7:20 PM ^

Why the hell is everyone always so high on Nebraska? Call me when they win something, or beat an elite team for that matter. Or if Taylor Martinez learns to throw better than an eighth grader.


July 8th, 2012 at 8:06 PM ^

My theory is that Nebraska is a perennial power which was expected to thrash the "underachieving" Big Ten last year.  Since that didn't happen, I guess they're discounting last year as a fluke so this is the year that Nebraska thrashes the B1G or something.  The Big Ten just can't get no respect in the mainstream, apparently.


July 9th, 2012 at 6:45 AM ^

OSU & Wisconsin rotate off the schedule for Illinois and Purdue, Martinez senior year, third year in conference. But we'd be fine winning this year.

I think part of why the pundits were so high on us winning our first year was that we'd played for the XII title the last two years and lost the two games by a total of 4 points.

Very few Nebraska fans I knew expected to walk in and thrash everyone in the Big Ten.


July 8th, 2012 at 8:00 PM ^

I know the D will play as tough as last season but will Roh and Black's presumed improvement offset the loss of RVB and Martin? Of course Big Will - who has at times demonstrated the ability to make him a 5* recruit -  is going to be paramount to our D having the success of last season's, imho.  I do think we're better in the back end of our D, but damn, we forced a lot of turnovers last year and will that have to be duplicated as well or is it even logical to think we can come close to that number?  I do know the team will hustle and many of those to's were big lineman coming from behind and stripping rbs so maybe. Actually Roh and Black are much quicker and faster both than RVB and Martin, but also smaller so their performance has yet to be proven. 

On the offensive side of the ball I think we do fine, and it's my opinion that senior qbs will make fewer mistakes than in their previous campaigns and with a proven RB in Fitz - glimpses of Biakbutuka like skills????- it is entirely possible that DR gains as much rushing yardage on far fewer carries. Our line is fine, but depth wil be young. Except for Roundtree our receivers are small but have proven they can be effective because I have no doubt we continue to run what DR knows best.  We will miss Hemingway. He had a special ability to catch the ball at its' highest pt and his yac sometimes were of highlight variety. 

It would not surprise me to see Ohio do big things in its first year under Meyer. They did use a lot of spread concept last season and they have the necessary talent already on hand to make Urban's job much easier than Hoke's predecessor in AA, especially at the most important position. That kid, although some of his passes missed by twenty yards, is a DC's nightmare if he happens to show the amount of improvement DR did from year one to year two. 

I think we break State's streak by Mattison confusing the first year signal caller. WI was lucky to get fifth year signal callers back-to-back, but I don't think this kid will perform at the same level as Wilson, who had a tremendous season.  

NU, in their house, will not be ez for anyone. We all saw what we thought was going to be an Ohio blowout turn into a big win for the Huskers. We've got a lot more toss-up games imo than many believe;The BIG, from top to bottom, is as well balanced as it has been in many years, and yes, I am considering the two new hires that shouid actually improve those team's chances this season. 

And I totally agree with the OP who stated that the likelihood of a big bowl choosing MSU over UM when both are qualified to be there is about as likely as the Rangers not leading the AL in number of All-Star picks. 

I think we're in for one of the most entertaing and competive seasons we've seen in awhile. My only caveat would be that if DR improves his decision making to the point that he's actually in contention for the Heisman at the end of Nov, M will be in the title game. 





July 8th, 2012 at 9:27 PM ^

I already miss Hemingway...But we'll have Roundtree, and the coaches have been talking about the strides Jerald Robinson has made heading into his 3rd year on campus for a while now. I'm expecting them to regularly target (former WR) Ricardo Miller at 6-4 too, but I still expect steady good production to come from our veteran slots Gallon and Dileo. They made some really good plays last year, Gallon being our second leading receiver. True freshman Amara Darboh will likely be able to contribute in 2012 if needed. Michigans offense and defense should both improve even over last year, being the second year in the new system, and our defensive backfield being a year older. 

Sidenote I think Sparty will have a big regression next year. They lost their entire offense, (literally) plus top producers Worthy and Robinson, and a lot of their DL depth, and most of their 2011 wins were close games. Every win they squeaked out last year will likely swing the other way this year. I'm betting by the time they come to 2A they'll already be a 2 or 3 loss team. ND visits them the week before the Irish hosts us, so ND will definitely show up try and beat them again to carry over to our game, then they host Ohio, then Iowa. Then they visit us, play Wisy, and Nebraska all in a row. They'll still have some good playmakers on defense, but they won't be scoring like they did last year, and could end the season right at .500. Last years team was good, but last years team is gone.


July 8th, 2012 at 11:31 PM ^

I do like his Oklahoma pick. They don't have a particularly difficult schedule with Texas (still?) rebuilding, Oklahoma State starting a freshman QB and ND potentially starting "Turnover" Tommy Rees. No conference title game either. My only objection is I see Oklahoma as a worse Ohio in that they can't beat anyone in a BCS game. I don't count UConn.  

Perkis-Size Me

July 9th, 2012 at 6:01 AM ^

I'm getting so sick of all the OSU-Urban Meyer hype and so many people believing OSU will go undefeated. I understand the guy's a great coach, but he's installing a completely new system with mainly guys who came in to learn a pro-style system. The guys who are built for Meyer's system are freshman and an unproven QB. You can't expect an offense to go from pro-style, pound the rock to perfect, Oregon-like speed in one year. There's going to be attrition, and some guys will find out they just can't cut it come gameday. I can see OSU losing to Wisconsin, MSU, Michigan and Nebraska next year.

OSU is already referring to itself as next year's version of USC. USC has been playing in the same system for years, with a proven QB and competent WRs. Get your head out of your asses, fuckeyes.